This is a thoroughly post-modern phenomenon.
[Breathe, don't be nervous. It's fine. Wallah, you're not doing anything wrong.]
Digitally arranged meetings with ostensible strangers yet with more familiarity than our ancestors could imagine.
An arranged meeting,
a warm greeting,
“Are you Sami?”
“I am,” as I posture for a hug.
[She’s actually more beautiful than I expected. Her ample curls smell like conditioner and sunshine.]
“So you’re Kuwaiti?"
"Yea, I moved here when I was 18, to Kansas of all places."
"To be honest, I had to look up the emoji flag from your profile. My Muslim WhatsApp group helped me out.”
“Oh, okay. So you’re Muslim?”
“Yea, I was raised Muslim; my mom married a Kuwaiti in the 80s, blah blah blah.”
“What? Your mom lived in Kuwait?”
“Yea, kinda crazy, I know, but it’s a small world.”
[Small worlds make the gaps between souls smaller.
Who knew such a small place could leave such a big impact on so many lives?
Certainly neither of us.
“Why do lesbians discriminate against bisexuals? You’d think of all people, they wouldn’t be so judgmental.”
“You’d think, but you’d be wrong. It’s like we have a plague.” Her voice goes on, but my mind drifts off.
[Tortoise-shell glasses, beautiful lashes, manicured eyebrows that frame flickering dark eyes, encased in a forest of curls, legging laced thighs, oh my. ::Deepsigh. Pay attention to what she’s saying! Oh my, she’s my type. This is bad. No, no, hamdilah, this is good.]
“Do you want another round?” the bar keep’s inquiry snaps me back to reality. I interrupt to suggest a change of location. [Perhaps something less commercial, less public, less straight, more private, and more intimate.]
“It’s only a short walk.”
“Yea, let’s do it.”
[By short walk, I mean three doors down from the bar. The perks of suggesting the venue.]
“Yea, it’s habit, if you don’t mind.”
“Of course not.”
She sits, crosses her long legs, and gives me this look. My heart flutters; I remember my manners:
“Can I make you a drink? What’s your poison? Gin or *****?”
I mix our drinks and think:
[She must like me.
This is good.
I’m glad we did this digital dance to find romance.
What a treasure, finding this post-modern habibi.